Except for BBC pidgin English lady, all the Nigerian media houses including Channels, Arise and AIT, that have interviewed candidates for the Edo 2020 Governorship elections have all been inept, lazy, bias and highly uncreative. Their lack of imagination is the main reason the Edo populace are witnessing this bitter division amongst ourselves that we have never seen before. After watching so many interviews on the run up to the Edo2020 elections, I am convinced it is the media’s incompetence that has translated into this division engulfing the Edo people today.
The kind of questions Edo political candidates are asked in interviews by these main media houses will show you there is already a conclusion that the media houses want to arrive at. They put the candidates on the defence and are not ready to concede when the questions are answered adequately. They will deny the candidates any avenue for empathy and continue to push for their negative conclusions, whilst being totally oblivious to the damage they are doing. I am very surprised to date that none of the executive of the major Nigerian media houses have reprimanded a presenter for “misrepresentation”, they should if they know what they are doing because the position of the media is too delicate to afford such unchecked recklessness.
The media is propagating hate and division as we are seeing today in Edo State. The inaction of the Nigerian media owners to acknowledge this problem has also made Nigerian presenters become opportunist’s, egotistic, and downright rude.
One example this week was on Arise TV when an Edo Governorship candidate from the NRM Party was asked to state how many jobs and industries he will create in Edo State if he wins? The 2nd presenter touted him that his lack of funds is the reason why he has no billboards in Edo State. Steve gave his reasons that the NRM are a grassroot party campaigning with posters and leaflets. The presenters did not like that answer nor we they interested in exploring any progress he was making on that front. They seemed disappointed because they were unable to find propaganda. On POI how many times and ways will the media try to confuse Edos that Oshiomhole is on the ballot box because this is all they want to hear. They cannot they ask POI better questions on implementation of his Agenda and the uphill task of unseating an incumbent. On GO, can’t they ask him how projects are going and how bad he will feel if he is unable to continue? Don’t they think the Edo public wants to know about the difficulties GO is experiencing in achieving his targets and his plans to navigate those difficulties if he wins another term? Simple and in-depth questions that can give the people the right information is missing, rather questions to satisfy the presenter’s ego and put the politicians in a bad light is all we are giving. One wonders why all Nigerian politicians seem to be failing, but more importantly, one is now wondering if these presenters have their questions looked at by an executive before going on air? Do they know the implications of what they are saying, and doing.
The media have continued digging up old videos of all the current Edo political players contradicting themselves in 2016. Oshiomhole, POI, GO, Don Pedro and Phillip Shaibu, they all did it, this is Nigerian politics. I am not saying there is so much wrong with referencing these archives except it is travesty to be “stuck” there at the expense of getting the Edo people the right information. They are not interviewing, they are interrogating. They are not asking questions about the future but lazily investigating the past. All these 2016 reruns are showing is an abject refusal of the media to up their game and start asking more relevant questions on the subject matter to uplift the people.
The presenters do not know anything about Edo State or the Edo people. They do not understand Nigeria wants to leave the darkness behind and go to a place that is lighter and they, the media, have a responsibility to get the people on that road. Only God knows how many states across Nigeria they have wrecked with their propaganda mayhem style, but they have come to Edo and we will tell them it will not happen here. We are loving brothers and sisters; Fathers and Mothers and we would like for it to remain so.
Finally, we have now entered the final month of an Edo election campaign that peaked too soon. The media houses should go and read more about power plants, farms, timescales, implementations and similar examples worldwide or in Nigeria, then comeback and conduct Edo interviews worth listening to. What you are serving Edos today is absolute garbage and this is the sole reason why there is so much division amongst the Edo people today. The responsibilities and power of media personalities to influence change negatively or positively should also be sunk into Nigerian top presenters because the dangers of their incompetence has become too glaring in Edo2020.